There’s always an unusual excitement in the air when its dining week. Your taste buds are a buzz, there’s no such thing as empty calories, and all is merry and right. It’s like Christmas for your tongue. I was so lucky to help brand the 2016 Anchorage Downtown Dining Week.

The Brief

Every year, the Anchorage Downtown Partnership puts on some form of a Downtown Anchorage Restaurant Week or Month. This year, they’re doing a “Downtown Dining Week” from April 8th – 17th.

There’s a list of participating restaurants, which might change. What they need is a cool piece of artwork that will be the symbol for the event. They’ll also need the working files so they can adapt it to work in multiple environments. Basically, the restaurants create a special “dining week” menu and people can participate… there may or may not be incentives, etc., for customers to visit multiple restaurants. But the poster art isn’t dependent on that.

Oh, and by the way, the turn around time is over the weekend.

The Solution

With little to go on and a super tight deadline, I had to think fast. The passion of the foodie culture was the first thing that came to mind. We all have our own culinary kryptonite that makes us weak in the knees. I began by exploring these passions. Plus, the brief did mention something about participation incentives. Maybe this was an aspect we could explore as well.

Eventually, I landed on the idea of developing these passions/foodie facets into tattoos. After all, if its something you go crazy for, you’ll want to wear it as a badge of honor. Even if only as a temporary tattoo. To make it specific to downtown, I thought it was a neat idea to form these passions around imaginary street gangs from the downtown area. I thought “What a good way to add to the experience! We could have a whole bunch of these things! We could collect ’em, trade ’em, share ’em, start conversations…”

The idea could have been more thoroughly developed, but it was an idea, and I needed to move quickly. Here are the tats that I came up with…



Temporary tattoos weren’t an option for their timeline/budget, but the idea of a badge system for participation was carried forward and developed into buttons…

CREDITS: Collaboration with David Taylor.